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Sunday 22.07.2018 | Name days: Marija, Marika, Marina
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Lembergs' supporter may become a Environmental Protection and Regional Development Minister candidate

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Baltic news, News from Latvia, BNN.LV, BNN-NEWS.COM, BNN-NEWS.RUEver since President Andris Bērziņš had officially offered Agriculture Minister Laimdota Straujuma to form the new government, political parties have been actively discussion about the division of ministries.

Straujuma has since mentioned that there are three blocs of ministries: resource holding, resource spending and power holders. Each of the coalition partners should take control over three ministries – one of each bloc. Unity may end up having more, because it will have the Prime Minister and Finance Ministry under its wing, as reported by lsm.

Economy Ministry’s fate remains uncertain – the National Union wants to put Kaspars Gerhards in charge of it; Reform Party wants Daniels Pavļuts to remain in his post.

Union of Greens and Farmers has clear plans in regard to two candidates it would appoint to the ministries it may be offered to lead. Given the choice, UGF would appoint Jānis Dūklavs to Agriculture Ministry and Kārlis Seržants to Ministry of the Interior.

UGF’s candidate to take the post at Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministy may be Artis Stucka. According to him, he would not mind leading this ministry. However, this would be a very controversial step, because he was the one who represented Aivars Lembergs in court when then the Minister Edmunds Sprūdžs issued the order to dismiss Lembergs from the post of Mayor of Ventspils. It is possible that UGF might select another candidate.

Reform Party admits that Economy Ministry remains in the party’s plans for the future. ‘It has always been clear that the Economy Ministry is very important to our party. Given all that was accomplished over the past two years, we would like all drafts that are currently being reviewed by the Saeima to become laws within the next 9-10 months,’ – says the head of Reform Party Edmunds Demiters.

He adds that Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs and Interior Minister Rihards Kozlovskis have been very good at their jobs. Therefore, they should remain in their posts. Reform Party does not have a candidate to take over EPRDM. Nevertheless, the party has full confidence in Einārs Cilinskis from the National Alliance.

All coalition parties are concerned about the method how the ministry selection process and their balancing for each party will be carried out.

It is expected that coalition parties will gather this Wednesday on a meeting to discuss specific proposals.

As it was previously reported, Aivars Lembergs had found a way to use the tragedy in Zolitude to make himself a ‘political safe house’. The roof of Maxima supermarket in Zolitude caved in November 21. The next day, November 22, neither Aivars Lembergs nor his deputies Jānis Vītoliņš and Guntis Blumbergs participated in the meeting of Ventspils City Council. They had allegedly gone to Riga that day.

Even though this new Cabinet of Ministers will have a short life (it will only remain until the next Saeima elections) it was nonetheless vital to overthrow the government at this point. Rumours behind the scenes state Lembergs is gradually running out of money to ‘feed’ politicians, fund his PR campaign and maintain the infrastructure in Ventspils. On top of that, law enforcement authorities are slowly getting closer to him.

According to officials close to Ventspils’ political kitchen, not only does Lembergs spend nearly LVL 2 million of funds taken from Ventspils Freeport on his personal needs every year, it is vital for him to have the Environmental Protection and Regional Development Ministry under his control, so that he can stop the initiative to expel persons that are under criminal investigation from the government. On top of that, given that Edmunds Sprūdžs had challenged the ruling of Liepaja Court in the care regarding Lembergs’ dismissal, there is a possibility that this situation may unfold in a negative way for Lembergs. Control over EPRDM and Transport Ministry are necessary for Lembergs in order to make sure people loyal to him are appointed to manage Ventspils Freeport.

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